Top British comedian Lenny Henry, whose professional name was taken from the Christian first names of both his blood fathers, is to star in a BBC1 remake of the classic 1970's sitcom 'Fawlty Towers' which had veteran comedy superstar John Cleese playing the then starring role of Torquay hotel owner Basil Fawlty.
In the remake Lenny will take on the now starring role of Basil's long suffering wife Sybil, originally played by Prunella Scales, with Basil to be played by co-star and ex-Bond movie actor Roger Moore.
"We didn't want to make the remake an exact copy of the original Fawlty Towers sitcom" explains Lenny,"It's a little dated now. Many of the lines used then wouldn't be funny to sophisticated viewers of today. The German show for instance wouldn't be understood by most viewers these days all this time after World War Two, and in any case Roger has said he wouldn't be able to lift his old legs to do the goose step high enough for it to even raise a titter."
Lenny didn't want to reveal too many secrets about the updated version but did reveal his role of Sybil would be played as a gay transvestite partner of Basil - with long red hair "like Rebekah Brooks".
The location is still to be set in a Torquay hotel. "Torquay is still a popular sea-side resort all these years after the original" explained Lenny,"and so the producers wanted to keep it set there as many of today's under thirties will have heard of the sea-side town of Torquay. Roger wasn't going to accept the role at first but decided to hop aboard when told he'd be allowed to keep the Maybach 62 car Basil will have in the remake."
"Filming won't begin until the autumn as the real owner of hotel we'll be using for filming didn't want to miss out on the peak season trade from real holiday visitors to Torquay this summer."